Japan has announced that they will no longer participate in the year-end eight nation's European Test series due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Japan and Fiji were supposed to join up with the half-dozen Six Nations countries to play in a tournament that would replace the traditional November tours where southern hemisphere teams visit those in the north.
Japan was to join France, Scotland as well as Italy in a four-team group held between November 14-December 5.
Japan's recent decision to limit foreign arrivals due to the COVID-19 outbreak which according to local media has hampered the return of some of Japan’s coaching staff as well as holding a domestic training camp ahead of the newly-created competition.
The withdrawal of Japan could be a serious blow to the proposed replacement tournament which is set to take place at the same time as the Rugby Championship featuring the All Blacks, Australia, South Africa and Argentina is due to happen in New Zealand.